Archive for Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Driver and pedestrian identified in Sunday accident at Ninth and Ohio; alcohol listed as contributing factor

September 4, 2012


The driver and the pedestrian involved in a Sunday morning accident near the intersection of Ninth and Ohio streets have been identified by police.

Lawrence police spokeswoman Kim Murphree said Hannah R. Swank, 20, of Topeka, was walking north across Ninth street at the Ohio intersection when she was struck by a westbound white Ford Explorer driven by Jay Edward Berryman, 25, of Lawrence. Both Berryman and Swank are listed as students on Kansas University’s website.

Swank was flown by air ambulance with serious injuries to a Kansas City hospital, but a condition update was not available.

Murphree said that alcohol was listed as a contributing factor in the accident report, but that she could not release any more information. Berryman was not arrested or booked into Douglas County Jail following the accident.

This is the second vehicle-pedestrian incident in Lawrence within the last week. On Aug. 26, KU student Colby Liston was hit by a vehicle in the 1600 block of Tennessee street around 2 a.m. Liston lost both of his legs as a result of the accident.


kufan1146 5 years, 9 months ago

If the driver was drunk, throw him in jail. Hope he's ready for a lawsuit..

jhawkinsf 5 years, 9 months ago

I had a friend once, who was drunk as a skunk, tried crossing the street, late at night, in the middle of the block, wearing all black ... Hit by a drunk driver, under age, no license, no insurance, in a "borrowed" car. Taxpayers picked up the tab for his injuries, taxpayers picked up the tab for her incarceration.

Legally, there might be some formula that will assign a percentage of blame to each. But as far as I'm concerned, they are each at fault 100%, mathematics be damned.

Cai 5 years, 9 months ago

You are correct. It is possible to have an accident that was entirely caused by someone else, even if you are drunk.

It is not, however, possible to be in said accident legally , as the law states you are not allowed to drive drunk, period. (as opposed to "it's okay as long as the accident isn't your fault."

Jayhawker07 5 years, 9 months ago

You are so right about the driver being arrested if alcohal was present. But then again, there is a system in place, set up for special folks. Not sure if that is the case, but some folks have preferential treatment in this town and also the world we live in. He might have had a medical situation, you never know. Please understand how the government, laws and how the power of money regulates our society. Sad but true. :-(

kansas_o_kansas 5 years, 9 months ago

Pedestrian under the influence? And at that time the traffic lights would have been flashing - a bad combination.

Evan Ridenour 5 years, 9 months ago

Clearly that statute is inapplicable here.

Adrienne Sanders 5 years, 9 months ago

I rather doubt that applies to the act of crossing the street.

mdfraz 5 years, 9 months ago

I rather think you're wrong:

KSA 8-1424 Highway-defined "Highway" means the entire width between the boundary lines of EVERY WAY publicly maintained when any part thereof is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel. (Emphasis added)

Basically any public street open to traffic will be included as a "highway". The statute could apply here, assuming the pedestrian was, in fact, under the influence.

Hoots 5 years, 9 months ago

They don't look out for cars while crossing in the middle of the day let alone in the dark of night with a few drinks under their belts. Pretty sure the cops would have arrested the driver had they been under the influence. I have a feeling this is going to be a bad year. We're off to a really bad start this year and most of you know of just a few serious things that have happened. There is so much more that hasn't made the paper.

somebodynew 5 years, 9 months ago

The cops will not automatically arrest the driver if he was drunk. Lots of times in very serious injury accidents they just gather all the information and present it to the DA. If an arrest is made the court's time clock starts ticking and the DA is under pressure to formally charge. Sometimes it is best to wait to see if the injured recovers, plus the results have to come in from the injured person also.

drudoo21 5 years, 9 months ago

I have restrained from posting on this article but as someone who was walking on 9th at the time of the accident, I feel that I now should.

My girlfriend and I were roughly 20 yards away, walking westbound on the south side of 9th, when the accident happened. We heard was sounded like a car on car collision just behind us. When we turned to see what had happened there was a girl, face up, in the middle of the road and the silver Ford in the west bound lanes. It just so happened that at this moment a police officer was headed east bound on 9th and was at the female's side within 30 seconds. 3 more police cruisers were on scene in what seemed to be under two minutes, with multiple firetrucks and ambulances showing up in the next couple of minutes.

There was no tire screech prior to the hit, which indicates the driver did not see the female or she walked off the curb, assuming he would have stopped. There were 3 males walking just behind my girlfriend and I and they also did not see the event. I believe the best witness may have been the police officer that was driving in that direction. The vehicle had significant front end damage on the left fender and hood.

We chose not to stay at the scene as my girlfriend became very upset at the site unfolding before us.

I wish Hannah a speedy recovery.

kufan1146 5 years, 9 months ago

Let the police know about all that, the more evidence they have in the case the better.

Clovis Sangrail 5 years, 9 months ago

" . . . alcohol listed as contributing factor . . . "

Cardinal rule of emergency response -- If you go to an accident after midnight and do not find a drunk, someone is still missing.

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